Dogs can eat certain fruits. Some are healthy and could be part of a balanced diet, while others are toxic and dangerous for them to consume. Others can be consumed but only in moderation or with special preparation.
Many dogs don't like tart or acidic fruits like oranges or cranberries, but most dogs do enjoy some kinds of fruits. Dogs don't need fruits as part of their diet, but they can enjoy fruit as a treat or supplement to a balanced diet.
What Fruits Can Dogs Eat?
The following fruits are safe for your canine pal to consume:
What Fruits Are Healthy for Dogs?
Just because your dog can safely eat something doesn't mean it is necessarily good for them in large quantities. Healthy fruits for dogs include:
- Blueberries. These berries have lots of antioxidants and fiber, so they are healthy for your dog's bowels.
- Cucumbers. This might be a great snack if your dog needs to lose a bit of weight. They have lots of vitamins and very few carbohydrates.
- Watermelon. As long as you remove the rind and seeds, this fruit is good for your dog. It has lots of potassium, vitamin A, vitamin B-6, and vitamin C. Since it's mostly water, it's also a hydrating treat for hot summer days.
What’s the Best Way to Prepare Fruits for Dogs?
Other fruits are safe for dogs to eat, but require special preparation or should only be enjoyed in moderation:
- Apples. Remove the seeds and core as those could be harmful to your dog.
- Bananas. This fruit is high in sugar, so you should give it as a treat once in a while.
- Cantaloupe. This is another sweet treat that should be given in moderation.
- Cranberries. Some dogs don't like the tart flavor of this fruit. If your dog does like it, giving them too many cranberries can give them diarrhea.
- Mango. The pit of this fruit contains cyanide and is a choking hazard, so cut the mango up and remove the pit before giving it to your dog.
- Oranges. Peel oranges before giving them to your dog. The peel can give them an upset stomach.
- Peaches. Avoid canned peaches as the syrup contains too much sugar. When preparing fresh peaches, cut out the pit as it contains a small amount of cyanide.
- Pears. Pear seeds contain a low level of cyanide so be sure to remove them before feeding a pear to your dog.
- Raspberries. This fruit contains xylitol, a sugar alcohol that is toxic to dogs in large amounts. Give your dog less than 1 cup of raspberries per day.
- Strawberries. These also contain a lot of sugar, so they should only be enjoyed in moderation.
What Fruits Are Not Good for Dogs?
Some fruits are toxic to your dog. Avoid feeding them to your dog:
- Avocado. This fruit contains persin, a toxin that makes dogs throw up and have diarrhea.
- Cherries. Cherry pits contain cyanide. It's not usually harmful if a human swallows one whole by accident, but chewing the seed releases the cyanide, which could harm your dog.
- Grapes. Grapes can cause sudden kidney failure in dogs. Remember, raisins are dried grapes and should also be avoided.
- Tomatoes. The green parts of the tomato plant have solanine, which is toxic to dogs.
What If My Dog Eats Something Toxic?
Dogs are curious creatures. They sometimes eat things that are bad for them when you're not looking. Even if you just suspect your dog has eaten something toxic, don't wait to see if symptoms develop. Contact your veterinarian right away. Some symptoms take a few days to show up. When you call your veterinarian, they will let you know whether to come in or whether you should watch for symptoms based on the situation.
If your veterinarian is not available, you can also contact the ASPCA's Animal Poison Control Center (APCC) at (888) 426-4435. This number is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, including on holidays. They also have a mobile app to help educate you about other substances that might be toxic to your dog.
Symptoms in dogs who have eaten something toxic may include:
- Standing with a hunched back
Some treatments your vet may use include:
- Activated charcoal to soak up the toxins
- An injection to make your dog vomit
- An operation
- Medication to reduce the effects of the toxins
- X-rays or an ultrasound scan
Dogs who eat toxic foods have the best chance for a full recovery when you take them to the veterinarian right away.